In 1978, the 2 mile Manayunk Canal Trail was built behind the Main Street buildings. This was one of the first sections completed of what is now the Schuylkill Trail that starts in Center City and goes for the most part uninterrupted past Phoenixville and ultimately will continue up into Schuylkill County. Another section goes from the Schuylkill River Trail at Oaks up to Green Lane and Skippack. The original Towpath still resides underneath the Norfolk Southern Tracks on the far side of the Canal.
The trail has been studied and reworked over the years and now is a beloved part of the Manayunk experience. Walking and biking bring folks into Manayunk to enjoy restaurants and shops. It is an asset which also attracts homeowners to the area, who are interested in the urban lifestyle, but like the Roxborough Manayunk open landscapes and trails.
Until recently totally maintained by volunteers, groups are moving to help. Manayunk Development Corporation (MDC) in partnership with other groups has funded through grants adding landscaping along the canal. Now MDC is helping to fund both the maintenance some of these areas and a Capital Project to improve the trail directly behind Main Street.
The area that MDC helps fund to maintain runs from Leverington Avenue to Lock Street. The Watermill at Manayunk maintains the area from Leverington Avenue to just before Fountain Street and volunteer groups maintain the Fountain Street area.